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6.8 Decoration and Victoria Cross Allowances

Last amended 
1 January 2022


"All allowances are constantly under review. The information contained in the Consolidated Library of Information and Knowledge (CLIK) does not replace legislation and any relevant decisions that have been determined by the courts.

No person should rely on the contents of CLIK without first obtaining advice from a qualified professional person."


What is Decoration Allowance?




Decoration Allowance is a fortnightly payment made to a veteran who has received one or more eligible decorations as specified in the VEA. A veteran may also receive a decoration allowance or annuity of a similar kind from a foreign country.

Eligibility criteria for Decoration Allowance

To be eligible for Decoration Allowance, the veteran must be:

  • receiving disability compensation payment (or would be receiving it if not for applicable offsetting provisions or a request to cancel the pension by the veteran), and
  • the recipient of one or more eligible decorations.    More →
What is an eligible decoration?




Eligible decorations are:

  • The following decorations awarded for gallantry during a war covered by the VEA or during warlike operations:
    • Victoria Cross
    • Cross of Valour*
    • Star of Courage*
    • Distinguished Service Order
    • Distinguished Service Cross
    • Military Cross
    • Distinguished Flying Cross
    • Distinguished Conduct Medal
    • Conspicuous Gallantry Medal
    • Distinguished Service Medal
    • Military Medal
    • Distinguished Flying Medal
    • Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (Military Division)
    • Medal of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (Military Division) (1919-1958), and with Gallantry Emblem (1958-1974)
    • Victoria Cross for Australia*
    • Star of Gallantry*
    • Medal for Gallantry*
    • George Cross
    • George Medal
    • any other decorations, awarded for gallantry during a war covered in the VEA or during warlike operations, that may be prescribed (none currently).


*These medals are a part of the Australian honours system.  All the other eligible decorations are Imperial honours.

Victoria Cross Allowance




Recipients of the Victoria Cross or the Victoria Cross for Australia may be granted an annual Victoria Cross Allowance. A veteran may also receive a Victoria Cross allowance or annuity that is of a similar kind from a foreign country. The Victoria Cross Allowance is granted in addition to any Decoration Allowance payable (although it is not a requirement that a person be receiving the Decoration Allowance in order to receive the Victoria Cross Allowance).

Assessment of Payments Related to Decorations




The Decoration Allowance, Victoria Cross Allowance, and any payment by a foreign country of an allowance or annuity that is of a similar kind to these are not considered income for income support purposes. However, they are counted in working out a person's total income for the purposes of the financial hardship rules.    

More →

For the purposes of Part VI of the VEA, a reference to a veteran is taken to be a reference to:

  • a veteran as defined in subsection 5C(1) of the VEA;
  • a member of the Forces as defined in subsection 68(1) of the VEA; or
  • a member of a Peacekeeping Force as defined in subsection 68(1) of the VEA.

For the purposes of Part VII of the VEA, according to subsection 5C(1), veteran means a person (including a deceased person):

  • who is taken to have rendered eligible war service, or
  • in respect of whom a pension is, or pensions are, payable under subsection 13(6) and
  • in Part III and Part VIIC of the VEA includes a person who is:



Disability compensation payment (known before 2022 as disability pension), for the purposes of service pension, income support supplement and veteran payment, means:

  • a pension paid by way of compenstion for incapacity from war caused conditions, or peacetime, peacekeeping or hazardous service caused conditions (other than a war widow's or orphan's pension); or
  • temporary incapacity allowance; or
  • any other payment in respect of incapacity or death resulting from war or war-like operations in which the Crown has been engaged (usually paid by another Commonwealth country).

Please note that the Disability Compensation Payment is legally a pension by way of compensation under the VEA so that concessional benefits under state, territory and local government legislation to pensioners/pensions under the VEA are not denied.